GCN Lab Review: Corel Paradox X4

Pros: Easy to use; robust features
Cons: Difficult to find many features
Features: A
Performance: B+
Ease of Use: B+
Value: A
Price: $269, includes WordPerfect Office suite

Corel’s new Paradox X4 has the most features of any database in this review. However, a slightly clumsy interface made it difficult to find many of its best features.

We had no trouble importing and analyzing Microsoft Excel data. Paradox delivered the second-best performance, behind Access, in data analysis. With regard to data reporting, Paradox was the best in the review.

Corel Visual Intelligence SE, a new member of WordPerfect Office, works in concert with the spreadsheet and database counterparts to provide robust, clear and powerful reports. In many ways, we were more impressed with Visual Intelligence than we were with Paradox. Using the two programs, you can easily identify trends in your data and intuitively build data analyses with a click, including what-if scenarios that explore your options.

Another interesting feature of Paradox — and the whole WordPerfect Office suite — is its new PDF capabilities. According to Corel, more than 80 percent of PCs worldwide have PDF-reading software, and the security features associated with PDFs have made the format a standard for sharing electronic documents. But the value of PDFs hasn’t been fully exploited when all you can do is read them. So WordPerfect Office X4 now lets you import, edit, archive and export PDFs.

Despite those features, Paradox is dogged by the same issue that haunts many databases: finding a better and easier way for users to access those features.

Corel, 613-728-0826,

About the Authors

Carlos A. Soto is a former GCN Lab technology analyst.

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